It must be because I live in a part of my country that doesn’t touch a massive body of water. That’s got to be the reason why I’m fascinated by the sea. I love the sound of waves hitting the shore. I’ve got to touch it. Get my feet wet in it. I need some explanation for all of the pictures of water that I took on holiday.
… who stilled the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves … Psalm 65:7a (NIV)
… Muzzler of sea storm and wave crash … Psalm 65:7a (MSG)
In some ways, I relate completely to massive bodies of water. They are always moving, rolling into the shore. It seems that I rarely stop. There is always something that needs doing. Something I put off that I shouldn’t have. I have to keep moving to accomplish all that is needed or required of me.
Waves break on something. There’s rocks in the way resulting in a great splash (my favourite kind of picture). Waves roll up on the sandy beach, running out when the last drops of water are pulled back as they curl up on each other. Sometimes, I let myself get to the place where I’m running on empty. There’s no reserves left. I have let all else around me claim my priorities and my time. When I crash, it’s never a pretty picture. No one wants to be around for that!
Sometimes, all is calm. A still lake. The gentle trickle of a stream. It’s peaceful. The gentle lapping of water against the shore. I crave those moments of calm. I relish them. It’s a balm to my soul. Those moments seem especially designed for renewal, for re-creating, for refreshment.
The ocean is so vast. (Granted so are many lakes.) It reaches past the horizon, stretching past my imagination. Sometimes, the burdens and difficulties of my day feel the same way. They threaten to swamp me, breaching the sandbag barriers I’ve hastily erected hoping to keep the water out.
But, I come back to David’s praise of a powerful God. My God is the one who can still the sea. The One who can turn the mighty churning oceans into a placid sheet of glass. The One who can halt the waves breaking onto the shore. I can’t imagine a force that powerful.
I’m in need of a powerful God. The events of my life, the events of my world constantly threaten to overwhelm me. The demands that pull at me from all sides, the needs that are before me, all seem to spill over onto each other. It would be so easy for all of these things to submerge me. It would be so easy to give up. It would seem simpler if I didn’t have to deal with any of it. But my God is not calling me to avoid life. He’s not looking for me to abandon the place where He’s put me. Rather, He’s wanting me to be observant. He’s wanting me to notice who is really in control. He’s wanting me to notice that He is powerful and something as untameable as the waters of the earth are not beyond His grasp.
So, I’ll keep taking pictures of water. It’s my reminder that I have a very big God with very big hands. Hands that create and form. Hands that still and restore. On Him I can depend.